Patch day for WoW – 3.3 Edition

Just because

Just because

World of Warcraft players were treated to patch 3.3 today, entitled Fall of the Lich King. The patch promised to bring a lot of great stuff, including three new 5-man dungeons, a new raid, and the new cross server LFG tool. Unfortunately, it’s patch day and that means none of it works.

Well, I take that back. Some of it works, there’s just an insane amount of crap that went wrong. Before we look at a list of the problems people are having, let me just say: yes, I know this stuff happens in MMORPGS.

Moving on, let’s have a look at some of the problems that came up:

  1. Servers go up, two hours after the expected up time.
  2. Players can connect and get booted when they hit the realm.
  3. Players can connect and get stuck at the loading screen.
  4. Players can’t connect… past “connected.”
  5. Servers go down. And up. And down.
  6. 19+ hours after the initial take down, servers go up and stay up.
  7. WoW launches then immediately closes.
  8. Launcher breaks: players hit “play” and nothing happens.
  9. Patcher getting stuck at 10% and 70%… or it just disappears.
  10. Blizzard blames Canada and rewards them with huge latency, contact your ISP.
  11. Instances refuse to load – “Transfer aborted – instance cannot be found.”
  12. “Additional instances cannot be launched” Variety is the spice of life.
  13. Patcher can’t figure out a uniform file name for all players, errors amass.
  14. Integrated Intel graphics (GMA965) cards go poof! No floors for you!
  15. Hundreds of players find themselves stuck in instances, unable to get out. Blizzard is unable to help at this time.
  16. Pivotal pieces of instance set won’t spawn. No instance for you!
  17. *Logging out inside a battleground and logging back in after the BG is completed will cause characters to be unable to queue using the Looking for Dungeon System.
  18. *Spamming the Auto Attack button causes the character to play the attack animation even though no actual attack is done.
  19. *Halls of Reflection – Player will get disconnected when running up the ramp to the ship.
  20. Cross server dungeons: the tool done broke. Players can’t queue for specific dungeons.
  21. Players who give loot to other players in a cross-server dungeon find the item deleted. No loot for you!
  22. Players who used the new LFG tool to join one of the new 5-man instances find themselves disconnected and unable to re-login.
  23. Miscellaneous – “I’m getting DC’d in this raid over and over!” posts abound. Well… feel lucky you can see it.
  24. Minutes after this post, the world server crashes! Again!
  25. After the server came back up, pre-patch WotLK instances fail to launch as well. Disabled?
[* Starred items taken from WoW.com]

It’s been a rough day for WoW. Like I said, this kind of crap happens. I expect it and I hope most other people do too. On a business level, I still find it unacceptable though. I like WoW, but can you tell me, how in the blue hell you “thoroughly test” something and you wind up with this much of a mess on your hands?

Unlike most other companies, the excuse of “we didn’t expect this much demand” doesn’t fly for Blizzard. If anyone should expect it, it’s them. And if they don’t, well, they’re lying or don’t want to admit they rushed something out the door.

Since many of our readers here don’t play WoW but still keep up with it, I thought you’d find this conglomeration of issues interesting.

Anyways, enough nerd rage for one post; here’s the part where I get to take off my mean-face. Honestly, I’m not bothered by any of this stuff right now. Why? Because by tomorrow (1:30AM right now), it should all work again, and this will all be water under the bridge as we get back into the swing of things.

So,  off to bed I go. Right after I finish my mount questline in LotRO. It should only take a minute… right? Tooooo tired.


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  1. kromus

    patch day = problems for most games, but you’re right. To say they test things out so much, it shouldn’t be this messy.

    some mess expected, but its never typical things with patch days, its always catastrophic, my only exception was- for me anyway- patch 3.3.

    couldn’t do any last night do to being European.

  2. Maxivik

    We were able to get into the ICC 25 for five hours at our normal raid time and cleared three of the four released bosses… Good patch day for us!

    1. Chris

      You guys were lucky, I was surprised it worked out so well for you. The tech support forums were *flooded* with people getting stuck in there or acts failing to load. From what I gather, it sounds like things worked alright for a little bit but then as load increased, things stopped working right.

  3. Mark

    My account isn’t currently active so this doesn’t affect me, but in the past if there was a monster patch like this a good rule of thumb was to stay away from the server that day 😀

  4. Trippin Ninja

    We had some some issues and our instance reset about 1 pull from the first boss but we still got him down and had a few attempts on Deathwhisper. Switching from Xperl to Pitbull was probably the biggest pain for me yesterday but I got everything dialed in just before raid time. One thing I found strange was that my desktop took longer to check the patch file that was already downloaded than my laptop did to just download it. I might just skip the background downloading next time around.

    Im really looking forward to trying the dungeon finder on lower level dungeons. Im hoping I can start healing dungeon runs to level my 45 Druid. After leveling a half dozen characters through Azeroth its starting to get really old.

  5. KalibreOnline -Games, Life and Ent

    Every big patch Blizz servers just crap themselves. Remember WoW at release? uff.

  6. Pauw

    Didn’t encounter any problems luckily… Just try’d to down Razorscale with my guild for the daily raid, but we got wiped 3 times… Then we did it in 2, 10 man groupes and everything went smooth :). I’m actually quite happy with the new LFG System. Even though it took 10 minutes instead of the 3 that they said it would be. You can just do your stuff, then do the dungeon, then go back to doing your stuff. But I do find it to be much less personal. Normally you would ‘get to know’ eachother. Just talk a bit while searching for the never to be found tank and/or healer. I do miss that strangely… Ah, well, we’l see what the future holds!

    Good job on the writing, thanks!

  7. We Fly Spitfires

    Gotta say that this is the one benefit for being European and playing on Euro servers – you guys guinea pig these problems for us :) Downloaded the patch tonight, logged on, no problems :)

  8. Kromus

    I love it. Its made WoW much better, and i’ve seen a lot of people say they’ll come back now because of it- an ex-player friend of mine practically exploded at the awesome of the idea.

    1. Champ

      Hey, that post leaves me feeling foilsoh. Kudos to you!

    2. auto insurance

      It’s great to find an expert who can explain things so well

  9. xXJayeDuBXx

    Patch day is always the best day to take a break, cause something always goes wrong with large patches in WoW. But eventually they get things ironed out, usually pretty quick it seems.

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